Chief Of Staff Is A Drain On Public Purse – Tony Aidoo

At the time the nation is facing serious financial challenges, with funds meant for critical sectors of the economy, including health and education, not being made available, the Mahama-led National Democratic Congress government has found it ‘prudent’ to keep on paying salaries of some workers for no work done.

According to Tony Aidoo, Ghana’s Ambassador-designate to Holland, staff of the Policy Monitoring and Evaluation Unit at the presidency have had no work to perform for the past 14 months, yet have been drawing their salaries over this period of time, courtesy the lack of seriousness on the part of President Mahama’s Chief of Staff, Prosper Bani.

He said the attitude of Mr Bani was causing a drain on the public purse, stressing:”These are resources that are being misused”.

Dr Aidoo, a former head of the Unit, yesterday descended heavily on the Chief of Staff, questioning his work ethics and accusing him of being indifferent to “serious administrative matters”.

He said on Joy FM that several efforts to get the Chief of Staff to reassign the workers had been ignored.

“The staff are there to be redeployed from a unit that has become non-functional to other places that are functional. The person responsible in taking this decision is the Chief of Staff. A Chief of Staff who will not respond to communication; he will not respond to letters, text messages [and] he won’t pick up the phone on serious administrative matters like this,” he lamented.

“So money continues to be paid to these staff [who] are psychologically traumatised…they don’t know what is happening,” he added.

Meanwhile, the New Statesman can report that the situation where workers are being paid for no work done is not limited to the Policy Monitoring and Evaluation Unit at the presidency alone. Workers of state institutions such as the Information Services Department and Social Welfare Department have been rendered almost redundant since President Mahama took over the administration of the country following the death of the late President John Evans Atta Mills.

A worried District Information Officers yesterday told the New Statesman that his staff come to work and have nothing to do because the resources they need to carry out their work of educating the public about government policies and programmes are not being provided by the Mahama administration.

“In fact, when they don’t even come to work I don’t raise any question because there is no dignity coming to office to do nothing and taking your pay at the end of the month. And this has been going on for a long time under this government. This was not the case under the previous government,” he lamented.

The Information Officer complained that their information vans are not in good shape to be able to move to the communities, while there is no money for maintenance. “There is even no money to run our offices; no fuel to move our vans, in situations where they can move; we only had something small for January to March last year, and since then noting has come for us to work with. In fact, the reality is that we are here doing nothing because the government has decided to render us non-functional,” he lamented.